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EurEau’s reaction to the Rapporteurs’ Draft Report on the UWWTD

EurEau notes the report of Nils Torvalds, MEP, Rapporteur for the Urban Wastewater Treatment Directive (recast)

We welcome and strongly support his amendment regarding the energy neutrality targets providing a holistic approach to the matter which reflects the reality of the wastewater sector. The deadlines will need to be extended.

Regarding the extended producer responsibility, we maintain our strong support for the Commission proposal, as an appropriate way of implementing the Polluter Pays Principle in the water sector, as was highlighted by the European Court of Auditors[1]. Dilution of EPR will increase the financial burden on municipalities, tax payers and water consumers. On the other hand, we welcome the amendment specifying that the amount of products placed on the market shall be considered at the EU market level.

We support the inclusion more sectors in the EPR scheme. Such an extension could be applied as soon as the EPR schemes covering pharmaceuticals and cosmetics are in place.

We would like to stress the need to address PFAS at source in the first place, given these substances can be hardly removed by end-of-pipe treatment, and they jeopardise the circular economy potential of the wastewater sector in particular through treated sludge or reclaimed water.

Last be not least, in relation to the extension of the scope to 500 p.e. and the new phosphorus treatment requirements, we need to carry out a further assessment of the Rapporteurs’ amendments to estimate both the environmental benefits and the impact on the affordability of water services.


[1] Special Report European Court of Auditors: The Polluter Pays Principle: Inconsistent application across EU environmental policies and actions.

EPR, water matters, energy neutrality

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